ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., June 3, 2014 – – EcoPesticides International, Inc., has added four biotech industry veterans to its leadership team. Les Stewart has been named CEO and president, Ravi H. Durvasula, M.D., is chief science officer, Adam Forshaw is chief technology officer, and David W. Miller, Ph.D., is a member of the board of directors.
EcoPesticides specializes in environmentally friendly microbial pest control technology that uses naturally occurring bacteria and fungi proven lethal to specific insect targets like locusts. The pesticides are encapsulated in biopolymers as protection from UV rays and heat, thus extending potency and performance. EcoPesticides’ “green” pesticides do no harm to people, animals, helpful insects such as honeybees, and the environment at large.
EcoPesticides Board Chair John Chavez says the new leadership will help accelerate plans to bring novel biologic-based pest and aquatic control products to the global agribusiness market. “Agribusiness, governments, farmers, and the public have expressed a willingness to embrace alternatives to harsh chemical pesticides such as the biologic products we’re developing. Having a team experienced in bringing groundbreaking technology to market will enable us to more quickly capitalize on anticipated growth in the green pesticide market,” Chavez said.
Stewart has more than 20 years of experience in biotechnology and drug delivery leadership positions with companies that include C.R. Bard and Bayer Healthcare. He has successfully spearheaded global product launches.
Durvasula, who is a co-inventor of EcoPesticides’ technology, is a professor of Medicine and Infectious Diseases at the University of New Mexico (UNM) School of Medicine and director of the UNM Paratransgenesis Laboratory. His research is supported by the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Forshaw is also a co-inventor of the company’s technology and has expertise in microencapsulation and biopolymer manipulations. He is a Howard Hughes Institute research fellow.
Miller is vice president for Dicerna Pharmaceuticals and former founder/head of research for EcoScience Corp., among the first biotech companies focused on biopesticides. Miller has participated in successful IPOs of five startup companies.
About EcoPesticides International, Inc.
Founded in 2012, EcoPesticides International, Inc., develops novel, biologic-based pesticides that stop defined pest species that threaten crops without harm to people or the environment. The company’s microbial pesticide technology was developed at the University of New Mexico and licensed through STC.UNM. Visit www.ecopesticides.net.